It was a beautiful day to drive to the Embassy Suites in Fort Lauderdale We were accompanied by Diane Compton who we met on Cruise Critic. She lives a few miles down the road from us. She was very enjoyable company for the 4+ hour drive.
The Embassy Suites is still a very nice hotel, spacious lobby, eating area and bar. The rooms are quite large. The added attraction is the free happy hour from 5-7 and free full breakfast buffet in the morning. And the shuttle (not free) to the port.
All the Cruise Critic people wore Mardi Gras beads to happy hour. And there was a bunch of us. We knew from meeting these folks that this would be a happy cruise.
The Southport Raw Bar within walking distance of the hotel was our choice for dinner where we ate too much. But it was sooo good! We should have walked back but ubered it instead.